Contrary to what some believe, there is no specific government employee regularly taking headcounts on the state's furbearer populations. State biologists and agencies accross the country rely directly on reporting from licensed trappers to determine population health, abundance, and density. Even those against trapping in New Hampshire regularly utilize and promote species data furnished, free of cost, by the state's trappers. Persons wishing to trap in New Hampshire must attend mandatory Trapper Education classes, purchase a license, file written landowner permission with New Hampshire Fish and Game, adhere to science-based regulations and harvest limits, check traps daily, and, most importantly, report their catch along with effort each season. These reports are viable and extremely important to wildlife management, and are considered an aspect of modern conservation in which NH trappers are more than happy to contribute to.
From NH Fish & Game Biologists:
"Skilled trappers provide the state with important ecological and societal benefits, such as managing abundant furbearer populations, at no cost. This long-standing part of New Hampshire’s cultural heritage remains relevant and necessary today, preventing flooding damage by beavers, minimizing disease risks and providing critical tools for wildlife management.
Trappers are a unique group among New Hampshire’s outdoor enthusiasts, having an unparalleled eye for picking up on natural surroundings and understanding wildlife behavior. Though relatively few in numbers, trappers provide an extremely valuable service to society by helping to manage wildlife populations and collect biological samples. They also contribute to public safety by maintaining beaver populations at manageable levels, thus preventing flooding of public roadways and urban areas. Trapping overall helps to keep furbearer populations at healthy levels, preventing over-population, which can significantly increase the risk of spreading diseases like rabies and canine distemper. With specialized skills and training and a deep connection to the natural world, trappers are a vital resource for a state that aspires to strike a balance between wildlife conservation and wildlife/human conflict management."